Mary Merkel-Hess


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  • Merkel-HessM_DarkTippedBlue_w.jpg
    Mary Merkel-Hess
    Dark-Tipped Blue

    Paper, paper cord, acrylic paint

    28" x 18" x 18"

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  • MerkelHessM_MonolithicRed_w.jpg
    Mary Merkel-Hess
    Monolithic Red

    Paper, paper cord, acrylic paint

    35" x 22" x 22"

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  • Merkel-Hess-GreenIsland_sm.jpg
    Mary Merkel-Hess
    Green Island

    Paper, reed, paper cord, acrylic paint

    22" x 14" x 22"

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  • MerkelHessM_ThreeSuns_2015_w.jpg
    Mary Merkel-Hess
    Three Suns

    Reed, paper, acrylic paint

    Each part: 6" x 24" x 24"

    part of the Ray Series

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  • Merkel-HessM_Maneta_w.jpg
    Mary Merkel-Hess
    Maneta

    Reed, paper, acrylic paint

    18" x 16" x 9"

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Mary Merkel-Hess
Dark-Tipped Blue

Paper, paper cord, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Merkel-Hess
Monolithic Red

Paper, paper cord, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Merkel-Hess
Green Island

Paper, reed, paper cord, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Merkel-Hess
Three Suns

Reed, paper, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Merkel-Hess
Maneta

Reed, paper, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

  • Merkel-HessM_DarkTippedBlue_w.jpg
  • MerkelHessM_MonolithicRed_w.jpg
  • Merkel-Hess-GreenIsland_sm.jpg
  • MerkelHessM_ThreeSuns_2015_w.jpg
  • Merkel-HessM_Maneta_w.jpg

Mary Merkel-Hess
Dark-Tipped Blue

Paper, paper cord, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Merkel-Hess
Monolithic Red

Paper, paper cord, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Merkel-Hess
Green Island

Paper, reed, paper cord, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Merkel-Hess
Three Suns

Reed, paper, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Merkel-Hess
Maneta

Reed, paper, acrylic paint


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Fiber artist Mary Merkel-Hess was born and raised in the midwest where the landscape is dominated by billowing fields of grass and corn. Her sculptural basket-like forms, which she refers to as “landscape reports”, are inspired by these natural surroundings. Using reeds and paper, Merkel-Hess’s work conjures images of slender grasses and cultivated fields, shaped and tamed like the gridded landscape of the midwest. Her continual use of the basket form is another symbolic reference to nature and life as it carries and stores the earth’s bounty.

STATEMENT

I make baskets using a technique that I developed, a combination of three-dimensional collage and papier mache. The vessels are made over molds. Small pieces of paper are applied with glue to the mold and allowed to dry, thus creating a paper form that is removed from its mold and further manipulated. Over the years, I have discovered many variations of this technique. I have used thin and thick papers, varied the shapes, and included paper cord, reed, or fiber in the body of the vessels.

I make vessels because I am fascinated with form and structure. I look for inspiration in the natural world, and then allow technique to mesh with these visual ideas to create something new. I enjoy all aspects of this process: the appreciation of the world around me that suggests ideas and the search for a method of construction that allows my ideas to take shape.

SELECTED COLLECTIONS

  • Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY
  • Museum of Art and Design, New York, NY
  • Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA
  • Racine Art Museum, Racine, WI